Facebook News Feed Redesign is a Creative Heaven

Facebook News Feed Redesign is a Creative Heaven In case you hadn’t heard Facebook (official link) is unleashing a new format/layout/design of it’s news feed. This is the screen that you, me and the rest of the world stare at daily (US adults average of 8 hours month). The change represents a big deal for all sorts of reasons. First it is much prettier and therefore nicer to look at and read; Secondly it’s cleaning and less demanding on the over-demanded eye; Thirdly it’s more of an opportunity for brands and individuals who want to grab your attention. Some time ago now Facebook changed their Edge Rank algorithm to favour it’s advertising model. Some brands noted a marked drop in engagement for their updates. To some it seemed like a merciless penny pinching exercise, but now we can see what all the fuss was about. The most obvious thing about the News Feed design is white space. In fact Facebook have gone as far as to heavily down play their own branding by replacing the old facebook logo (top-left) with a simple ‘f’ that reflects the smart phone app icon (i.e. the one we all recognise anyway). This huge new canvas, and the fact that there are new banner dimensions for brands to grab, means that the creative agencies of this world can really flex their muscles. This is both good and bad. Obviously there are great creative agencies, but there are also bad ones, so we can all look forward to ads that look as bad as the lol-cats videos that we still all suffer from. I’m all for the redesign. The current trend for white space and really clear layout is a good one that aso reflects the trend for responsive design for cross-platform usage, we’ll just have to see how it influences engagement, and more importantly for Facebook, how it helps drive brands to spend more on their advertising and drive up their share price. Further reading: What Facebook’s New News Feed Means for...

Creative Content Marketing & Blog Auditing

Creative Content Marketing & Blog Auditing Content was king. That is until it started to become poorly curated. Whilst marketers realise the importance of content they completely misunderstand the principles of curation. The very nature of relevance and visibility means that there’s a constant need for new content, but this is at the cost of engagement and longevity. ThinkSearch have a slightly different view of the world. While we appreciate the needs of the algorithms we also see a bigger picture – one where the value of content can be extended, and one where the depth of knowledge of content is more greatly appreciated.  The practice of SEO these days can quite heavily be one of content marketing. A good SEO strategy will involve research and auditing to determine the needs of those users that may be more willing to link to you and share your content, but this content, just with any content you publish on your website needs to be seen as part of your network and curated as such. How often do you review what you’ve written over the months and years and refer back to it via citation? Strengthening your offering, as the publisher that brands are having to become, is not the only aspect of this brave new world. Another big consideration is authorship. To layer on top of it’s automated technical link-based algorithm Google is also now starting to look at who has written which articles and bias it’s results based on criteria to do with this association. In the future the more well published you are the more visibility your content will receive over your peers and competitors. In an article today that AOL’s CEO Tim Armstrong backs up this fact with his observation on how their bet on content strategy would save AOL, and it appears to be working. A video-based creative content marketing strategy might not be accessible to all but ThinkSearch would certainly suggest starting with blog auditing. Do you know what content you’ve published has been working better and why? Do you know who it reached and how? Even a simple WordPress plug in can help breath life back into a blog that has become a dumping ground for content on the advice of your SEO agency. Content can be king again, but not until it receives the contextual associations it needs to keep on receiving, both from citations (internal and external) but also...

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